PlameGate: Criminal or just plain stupid?

As you can tell, I’m very interested in this story *G* Newsweek takes a look and offers an alternative theory on PlameGate. Wonder if we’ll hear this discussed on ABC News? Nah!

*snip* But more than 10 days after the story exploded, an alternative theory is emerging among those who are directly involved in the leak case: that the “senior administration official” quoted in the Washington Post piece simply got it wrong. There were indeed White House phone calls to reporters about Wilson’s wife. But most, if not all, of these phone calls, were made after the Novak column appeared, some government officials now believe.*snip*

But after the Novak column ran, Wilson says, he got plenty of calls. As NEWSWEEK reported in this week’s issue, Andrea Mitchell called him on Sunday, July 20, and told him that she “heard in the White House that people were touting the Novak column and that was the real story.” The next day, July 21, Wilson got a call from MSNBC’s “Hardball” host Chris Matthews, who told him that “I just got off the phone with Karl Rove, who said your wife was fair game.” (A source familiar with Rove’s conversation acknowledged the call but insisted that Rove put it differently: that it was “reasonable to discuss who sent Wilson to Niger.”) The efforts by Rove and perhaps others to fan the flames after the Novak column has been seized on by critics as evidence enough that the White House was directly involved in a trash-and-burn attempt to slime a critic. Rep. John Conyers, senior Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, yesterday wrote Rove a letter asking for his resignation, saying that Rove’s comments as reported by NEWSWEEK were “morally indefensible” and an indication that he was part of “an orchestrated campaign to smear and intimidate truth-telling critics.” (White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan has repeatedly refused to answer direct questions about Rove’s conversation with Matthews.) But even Conyers acknowledges that pointing reporters to an already published newspaper column is hardly a federal crime.*snip*

Hmmmm …. sounds possible, to me. There is just something so, I dunno, odd about all of this. Novak’s original story he told about just seeking info on who sent Wilson out on this mission sounds correct to me more and more everyday. BTW, did you know that Joe Wilson, the one who brought all this to the surface, is now going to write a book to tell us all about this? Yeah, he seems really worried about his wife’s security – esp. if he’s writing a tell all. Has he been on an advance promo tour for his upcoming book?

First came the leak. Now comes the book. Former Ambassador Joseph Wilson is writing a memoir about his diplomatic career and the leak that exposed his wife as a CIA agent and led to a major investigation.

Carroll & Graf Publishers, which announced the deal Wednesday, would not say what Wilson would be paid for The Politics of Truth, due on bookshelves next spring. “We made an offer, and he was happy with that,” spokeswoman Karen Auerbach said.

A statement from the publisher promised Wilson “will provide an unabashedly candid and truthful assessment of the United States’ involvement in the world.” The Justice Department has begun a criminal investigation to determine who in the Bush administration leaked the identity of Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame, an undercover CIA operations officer.

Before Plame was outed in the press, Wilson had accused the White House of manipulating intelligence to exaggerate the threat from Iraq’s former president, Saddam Hussein. Wilson has suggested his wife’s name was leaked as retaliation for his views. Auerbach said talks with Wilson began during the summer, and an agreement was reached the week before the leak controversy broke in newspapers.*snip*

Uh huh.